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In the early 21st century, Israeli Jews constituted roughly half of the population west of the Jordan, while Arabs—Muslim, Christian, and Druze—and other smaller minorities accounted for the rest.The Jewish population is increasingly composed of persons born in Israel itself, although millions of immigrants have arrived since the founding of the State of Israel in 1948.After Roman times the name had no official status until after World War I and the end of rule by the Ottoman Empire, when it was adopted for one of the regions mandated to Great Britain; in addition to an area roughly comprising present-day Israel and the West Bank, the mandate included the territory east of the Jordan River now constituting the Hashimite Kingdom of Jordan, which Britain placed under an administration separate from that of Palestine immediately after receiving the mandate for the territory.The name Palestine has long been in popular use as a general term to denote a traditional region, but this usage does not imply precise boundaries.Palestine, area of the eastern Mediterranean region, comprising parts of modern Israel and the Palestinian territories of the Gaza Strip (along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea) and the West Bank (the area west of the Jordan River).
From Ramallah in the north to Beersheba in the south, the high plateau of Judaea is a rocky wilderness of limestone, with rare patches of cultivation, as found around Al-Bīrah and Hebron.
It is bounded by the Sinai Peninsula on the west and the northern extension of the Great Rift Valley on the east.
The social geography of modern Palestine, especially the area west of the Jordan River, has been greatly affected by the dramatic political changes and wars that have brought this small region to the attention of the world.
Both the geographic area designated by the name and the political status of it have changed over the course of some three millennia.
The region (or at least a part of it) is also known as the Holy Land and is held sacred among Jews, Christians, and Muslims.Precipitation, which arrives in the cool half of the year, decreases in amount in general from north to south and from the coast inland.